Posts Tagged ‘drop-out age’

Kentucky’s High School Drop Out Problem

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

On Kentucky Tonight Monday, two lawmakers and advocates for and against raising the compulsory school attendance age in the state from 16 to 18 met to discuss the issue.

This is one priority that Governor Steve Beshear says is at the top of his list for the 2013 session of the General Assembly, which begins next week.

Advocates for raising the age to 18 were Rep. Carl Rollins, chair of the House Education Committee and Stu Silberman, executive director of the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence. They list a litany of reasons why Kentucky needs to join about 20 other states who have raised the drop out age to 18: social implications, drop outs are more likely to receive public assistance than high school graduates, and a study which reports that 82 % of American prisoners are high school drop outs.

Opponents of the measure, like Sen. Mike Wilson, chair of the Senate Education Committee and Richard Innes, education analyst for the Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions, report raising the age might be costly to the school districts. They also point out that evidence is not conclusive that raising the age to 18 is the way to address a multifaceted and complex school dilemma.

All of the panelists did agree the Kentucky school system has to do something to keep more kids in school; we’re losing approximately 6,000 to 7,000 kids a year by dropping out.

Innes did some additional homework on a couple of points that were brought up on the show.
His comments can be seen on his blog.

You can watch the entire hour discussion, including a number of good phone calls and Web form messages.

Monday night, Feb. 4, our topic on “Kentucky Tonight” will be hemp. Should the state have a law which legalizes the production of industrialized hemp?
Join us at 8/7 C for that discussion.

General Assembly Back in Frankfort

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

The 2011 session of the General Assembly is beginning this week. The so-called short session, a meeting which can last no more than 30 days and must adjourn no later than March 30th, already has a packed agenda and a lot of work to accomplish in a short period of time.

The General Assembly will meet this week, then recess and reconvene February 1st. The cost of the session to Kentucky taxpayers…almost $64,000 per meeting day.

Senate Republicans, under the leadership of President David Williams, have talked about an aggressive effort to introduce and pass several bills the first days of the session. The bills include an Arizona-like immigration bill for Kentucky, a tax reform commission, and legislation addressing the state’s pension system. Democrats have also filed a number of bills for consideration including raising the drop-out age from 16 to 18, bills dealing with childhood obesity, and legislation that would clamp down on the sale of an ingredient used to make meth.

On Kentucky Tonight Monday night, our panel of legislators discussed a number of these bills. Also mentioned was a statewide smoking ban, which all four lawmakers agreed on. Thursday, Jan. 6th, a coalition of local, state, and national health advocates will release a new poll showing widespread support for making all Kentucky workplaces, including bars and restaurants, smoke free. As you know, there are a number of Kentucky cities and counties which have voted to become smoke free, but there is no statewide smoking ban. You also know that Kentucky is at the top when it comes to smoking related illnesses and deaths. For more information on the study visit,

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